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The Journey

Role / project
Senior Art Director
Storytelling - Brand Management

An Overview - not just a single organization

The Journey is a multi-faceted group of non for profits that serve tens of thousands of people on the weekly basis. Based in spiritual principles, and meant  to better serve the local community through acts of goodwill, along with financial and emotional support. The family of brands under the Journey's partners is vast. Organizations like Mission St. Louis which serves as job training for ex-felons, Covering House that provides refuge for those who have escaped sex trafficking, Karis House which is a full service counseling center, and many more. Found mostly across different buildings on a weekly basis where their community gathers, this is an organization that touches the lives of people every day of the week.

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In-House Experience

My role for 4+ years was Lead Art Director for the entire organization and its partners. Crafting the visual narrative that inspired and moved people to respond in certain ways. When a company doesn't have a product to sell, it relies purely on beautiful story telling that emotionally moves people to do something. This was my job - to consistently on a weekly basis tell the stories of individuals and businesses in the community that inspire others to be their best self in serving those around them.

The tension was consistent authenticity. To emotionally manipulate someone do move them was easy - too easy at times. To move them in an authentic way that gave them the foundation to fall back on when things get hard and realize it wasn't all a facade? Now that's the challenge. Given that we weren't just a blip in thousands of peoples timelines, but a constant through thick and thin, we had little margin of error when it comes to being authentic. Because any sign of inauthenticity was easily seen when you dive any deeper in a relationship.

My Beautiful Journey

The result of doing this for over 4 years in-house, along side of a large staff and volunteers, was that I got to lead out on authentically telling a consistent story that people could learn to trust. I led a team of employees and volunteers on how to best tell that visual story, while aligning with a large group of leaders above me.

I worked through three complete restructurings of the organization. The founder of the organization was voted out on moral failure, the next was burnt out and left a sinking ship, while the third was milked for every piece of energy he had until he had no more. I had to guide a group of volunteers through crises management, complete organization rebranding, write the hierarchy of brand architecture, while developing the brand messaging for new locations, all while launching seasonal campaigns that thousands of people had to easily understand and implement in their local context.